All About Food: Try something different

Helen Keown


Helen Keown

All About Food: Try something different

Keema can be made from almost any meat, can be cooked by stewing or frying

Hello and welcome to all about food. This week it’s time to try something a little different…

Ask Gingergirl

Dear Gingergirl,

My children are very easy to cook for as they like all kinds of food, particularly recipes with spicy or herby flavours. Do you have any midweek recipes that I can try that are both tasty and inexpensive to make when I get in from work?

Thank you,


Hello Mary,

First of all I’m delighted that your children are open to all types of foods, this makes your job a lot easier! Midweek dinners do need to be fast as our time tends to be limited and we are often tired after a busy workday. I have mentioned in the past about the advantages of planning dinners at the beginning of the week, doing a weekly shop and, when time is more plentiful, making batch dinners for the freezer that can be reached for on days when we’re particularly frazzled! One ingredient I tend to have in my freezer is mince (beef and lamb). I do buy mince from my local butcher as both price and quality tend to be excellent.

For those of you who suddenly have the urge to yawn at the mere mention of mince, I can assure you that the recipe below will change your mind!

Keema is a traditional dish from the Pakistan region that translates as minced meat. Traditionally goat meat was used but these days lamb is the meat of choice.


(serves 4)

1 large onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped

4cm piece ginger, peeled and chopped

2 green chillies

3 tablespoons of sunflower oil

500g of lamb mince

2 tablespoons of garam masala

2 teaspoons of turmeric

2 medium, ripe tomatoes, diced

2 tablespoons of natural yoghurt

200g frozen peas

1 small bunch coriander, chopped

Place the onion, garlic, ginger and chillies together in a food processor until it forms a paste – if you don’t have a processor you can finely chop the ingredients. Heat the oil over a medium heat in a large frying pan and fry the mixture until it becomes very fragrant. Add the mince and fry until it begins to brown, stirring to break up any lumps.

Add the garam masala and turmeric and fry for one minute. Add the diced tomatoes and bring to a simmer, cook for another minute, then stir in the yoghurt, some salt and a good grind of black pepper. Add a splash of water if you feel you need to loosen the mix, then cook the mixture for half an hour. Add the frozen peas and cook for five minutes, then stir in the chopped coriander. Serve with flat bread, naan bread or poppadoms, chutney and some more natural yoghurt.

Recipe variation

Beef mince can be used in this recipe if preferred. Feel free to add some diced potatoes or play around with the spices – cinnamon, cloves, cardamom or cumin all work well. Keema is also perfect served in pitta bread with mango pickle and some green leaves. Heavenly!

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